This girl is funny, smart, adaptable, perceptive, knows when to be serious, knows when to have fun and confident. I keep looking at her wondering, "How is it possible she has only been home for 10 short days?" She just fits in so well with our family that it amazes me constantly.
Today, she really began coming out of her shell. Little by little, she's beginning to open up and speak more English. She is beginning to laugh and tease her brothers and sisters, and ME! She lights up when her dad walks through the door. I am so surprised all these things are happening so quickly! I didn't expect it! But we are so grateful for her beginning to trust us already.
Yesterday, she and I were baking muffins. I had her peeling apples with a knife. Then I offered her a vegetable peeler. She tried it but went quickly back to the knife. She was a pro and I questioned her about her experience. Yes, she had peeled potatoes while in Ethiopia. I told her that most 14 year old girls in America could NOT peel an apple with a sharp knife like she could. She was shocked! She said, "Boys??" I said, "No. Girls!" Her reply, "Well, then they are NOT girls!" So funny.
We went to the Middle School that she will be attending this morning. She is anxious to start school! I was very impressed with the school and teachers there. She will be starting 7th grade this year and next year, she will be an 8th grader. Our district believes in placing the students according to their age, not their ability.
She will spend tomorrow and Friday with the ELL (English language learners) teacher, just getting to know her for a couple hours each day. Next week, she has a dentist appt. and an appt. at the International Adoption Clinic, which will take all day. So she will begin full days on Thursday, next week.
The school is set up so nicely. I remember being in jr. high and having to search all over the school for my classrooms. In this case, they have a 7th grade wing which makes it so incredibly easy to find your classroom. She won't have any problem finding her way around at all! The only thing we need to work on is "the dreaded combination lock" as she will have one on her locker and one on her gym locker:-)
Tonight she is attending our church's Wed. night program for the first time with her new friend, Courtney. I took her last week for a look but we didn't stay long. Tonight I will drop her off (ok, not drop off but leave her) there with Courtney. She's very excited!
Can you tell...I LOVE this girl??
We went to Target today and she picked out 4 frames to send to her friends at the orphanage. We'll print off the pictures we took while we were there of Aliya and each of them and put them in the frames. She couldn't stop thanking me for buying them. She told me how happy they would make her friends. I can imagine their faces in receiving such a simple gift. They will love them, they are very cute!
Thank you for your prayers on our behalf. God is definitely answering and making this a very easy transition!
Laura...the proud mom!